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Assimil

 Language Learning Forum : Language Programs, Books & Tapes Post Reply
278 messages over 35 pages: 1 2 35 6 7 ... 4 ... 34 35 Next >>
fanatic
Octoglot
Senior Member
Australia
speedmathematics.com
Joined 5314 days ago

1152 posts - 1814 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, French, Afrikaans, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Dutch
Studies: Swedish, Norwegian, Polish, Modern Hebrew, Malay, Mandarin, Esperanto

 
 Message 25 of 278
19 May 2005 at 10:04am | IP Logged 
Because the program comes from France I would say the stress should be on the final syllable. That makes it a-see-MEEL.

That is how I have always heard it pronounced, but we say things differently in Australia.
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fanatic
Octoglot
Senior Member
Australia
speedmathematics.com
Joined 5314 days ago

1152 posts - 1814 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, French, Afrikaans, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Dutch
Studies: Swedish, Norwegian, Polish, Modern Hebrew, Malay, Mandarin, Esperanto

 
 Message 26 of 278
22 May 2005 at 6:44pm | IP Logged 
Here is the story of Assimil and Alphonse Chérel as taken from the Assimil website:

Born in Rennes, France in 1882, Alphonse Chérel created the Assimil concept in 1929.
A young graduate, he left to work in Czarist Russia as a tutor, and taught himself the language of Tolstoy. He moved on to England and acquired English. He headed to Germany, and learned German... and so on.

At the age of 46, he decided to make use of his vast experience in self-taught language learning and invented an original calendar on which each page a short lesson in English appeared with a humorous cartoon. The principle of the daily lesson, short and amusing was born!

In 1929, the first Assimil method - Anglais sans peine - (English With Ease) sprang to life. Alphonse discovered that the word root Assimil existed in almost every language, and thus was born the brand name!

Today, millions of people in France and around the world know the opening sentence of that first Assimil book: "My tailor is rich," often without even knowing where the phrase originated. In fact, this curious line was drafted in complete spontaneity by Alphonse and has taken its place in contemporary French jargon.

Of course, today, long after the departure of Alphonse, the Assimil language methods are constantly being updated and revised to keep in stride with the language use of the day. But the original concept, unique in the world, has remained solidly in place. And the proof is in the pudding: the methods are original and, above all, effective.
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jradetzky
Triglot
Senior Member
United Kingdom
geocities.com/jradet
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521 posts - 485 votes 
1 sounds
Speaks: Spanish*, EnglishC2, GermanB1

 
 Message 27 of 278
23 May 2005 at 5:24pm | IP Logged 
I have the old set (1970s or 80s) of Assimil cassettes "The New English without toil" and was highly amused by the outlandish nature of the conversations (My tailor is rich, etc). The accent used is British (beautiful, perfect pronunciation) and with a good deal of British humour (not very straightforward for beginners).

I remember having seen an Assimil course for the first when I was about 9-10 years old. I recall it was "El alemán sin esfuerzo" (German without toil) because at the time I was obsessed with all things German and I kept a notebook with notes, flags, maps, and all kinds of information about West Germany. Now I wonder what could have happened if my parents had bought me that course in those years given my high levels of enthusiasm/obsession.
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fanatic
Octoglot
Senior Member
Australia
speedmathematics.com
Joined 5314 days ago

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Speaks: English*, German, French, Afrikaans, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Dutch
Studies: Swedish, Norwegian, Polish, Modern Hebrew, Malay, Mandarin, Esperanto

 
 Message 28 of 278
24 May 2005 at 5:26am | IP Logged 
When I was learning German from the Assimil German Without Toil program we had a visit from some German friends. They heard the recorded program and laughed at the way the speakers spoke their language. Very posh German was their comment. Very unnatural.

When I went to Germany it didn't hinder me in the slightest. Now my German is fluent I can listen to the tapes and realize that the speakers sound like professional radio announcers. They were good accents to imitate.

Trying to sound like the Assimil speakers never caused any problems for me. I soon picked up slang expressions and the local pronunciations. It certainly helped that I learnt German from good speakers with a good accent. It would not have helped if I had learnt from people who spoke dialect or poor German that you might hear in the streets.



Edited by fanatic on 24 May 2005 at 5:27am

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lola
Groupie
Joined 5320 days ago

63 posts - 65 votes 

 
 Message 29 of 278
02 June 2005 at 11:24am | IP Logged 
As I re-read this topic I remembered the recommendations both Assimil and Pimsleur make about doing just one lesson a day.

Considering Ardaschir's method of internalising the language, what would be the optimum daily time devoted to learning a language (just as he explained in this topic)?. I'm asking for a minimum and a maximum range, as well as an optimum if there is such a thing, for an average learner.

Edited by lola on 02 June 2005 at 11:24am

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jradetzky
Triglot
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United Kingdom
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Speaks: Spanish*, EnglishC2, GermanB1

 
 Message 30 of 278
02 June 2005 at 11:35am | IP Logged 
lola wrote:
As I re-read this topic I remembered the recommendations both Assimil and Pimsleur make about doing just one lesson a day.

Considering Ardaschir's method of internalising the language, what would be the optimum daily time devoted to learning a language (just as he explained in this topic)?. I'm asking for a minimum and a maximum range, as well as an optimum if there is such a thing, for an average learner.


When I started learning German with the "Curso de Alemán" by Planeta-Agostini, I did a lesson per week. Each lesson was 17 pages and 20 minutes (in audio) long. I tried to do more than one lesson per week but I discovered that I was failing to internalise the language so I switched back to one lesson per week. Now, for Pimsleur French it took me more than one day to do a lesson, I would say two days was the average, although sometimes I repeated the same lesson up to 4 times on different days.
2 persons have voted this message useful



fanatic
Octoglot
Senior Member
Australia
speedmathematics.com
Joined 5314 days ago

1152 posts - 1814 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, French, Afrikaans, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Dutch
Studies: Swedish, Norwegian, Polish, Modern Hebrew, Malay, Mandarin, Esperanto

 
 Message 31 of 278
02 June 2005 at 6:00pm | IP Logged 
I find the optimum seems to be between 30 and 45 minutes per day, split up into chunks of around 5 to 10 minutes at a time.

I learnt German with Assimil German Without Toil at the rate of one lesson per day and generally spent around 30 minutes a day and was able to hold simple conversations with my German friends after around 5 or 6 weeks and was reasonably fluent after 5 or 6 months.

I have used the same method with other languages and found I spend around half an hour a day working with my course but I think in the language or talk to myself and even dream in the language which probably adds to the learning time per day.

I have read people's ideas that you need to spend around three hours a day if you are seriouys about learning a language but I have found that unrealistic.

I do give myself sessions of "immersion days" where I spend half a day to a day just living in the language, but I don't do that very often.

I find that if I make it too hard for myself I am inclined to give up and lose motivation.
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M-Squared
Senior Member
United States
Joined 5307 days ago

117 posts - 118 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: German, Spanish

 
 Message 32 of 278
05 June 2005 at 11:03am | IP Logged 
I've been looking on a couple of sites for the Assimil programs, and I
wonder if the forum members might clear up some questions.

1. For the English base programs only French With Ease is listed as "The
New." Are the rest all the "old" programs, as discussed here?

2. The Assimil site has a "German With Ease" program listed, but no more
advanced "Using German" program. Amazon lists the "Using German"
program, but says it is out of print. Multilingual Books lists the Using
German program. Did Assimil just decide to stop publishing it (too little
market, perhaps?) and the other listings are just leftover stock?



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